A market analysis is the process of gathering information

A market analysis is the process of gathering information about a market within an industry. Your analysis studies the dynamics of a market and what makes potential customers tick.

A market analysis may seem complex, but it’s necessary if you want to lead your business in the direction of success

Many factors go into making a business successful, and where it is located can be the first major decision for investors and entrepreneurs.

Here are the Best Countries to Start a Business in 2021

  • Singapore.
  • Indonesia.
  • Mexico.
  • United States.
  • Malaysia.
  • India.

Starting a business entails understanding and dealing with many issues—legal, financing, sales and marketing, intellectual property protection, liability protection, human resources, and more. But interest in entrepreneurship is at an all-time high. And there have been spectacular success stories of early stage startups growing to be multi-billion-dollar companies, such as Uber, Facebook, WhatsApp, Airbnb, and many others.

In this article, I give an overview of 35 key steps for entrepreneurs who are starting a business, with links to additional articles addressing some of the topics in more depth.

1. Understand the Commitment and Challenges Involved in Starting a Business

Starting a business is a huge commitment. Entrepreneurs often fail to appreciate the significant amount of time, resources, and energy needed to start and grow a business.

Here are some of the biggest challenges to starting and growing a business:

  • Coming up with a great and unique product or service

2. Protect Your Personal Assets by Forming the Business as a Corporation or LLC

Never start a business as a “sole proprietorship,” which can result in your personal assets being at risk for the debts and liabilities of the business. You will almost always want to start the business as an S corporation (giving you favorable flow through tax treatment), a C corporation (which is what most venture capital investors expect to see), or a limited liability company (LLC). None of those are particularly expensive or difficult to set up. My personal preference is to start the business as an S corporation, which can then easily be converted to a C corporation as you bring in investors and issue multiple classes of stock.

4. Focus on Building a Great Product—But Don’t Take Forever to Launch

When starting out, your product or service has to be at least good if not great. It must be differentiated in some meaningful and important way from the offerings of your competition‎. Everything else follows from this key principle. Don’t drag your feet on getting your product out to market, since early customer feedback is one of the best ways to help improve your product. Of course, you want a “minimum viable product” (MVP) to begin with, but even that product should be good and differentiated from the competition. Having a “beta” test product works for many startups as they work the bugs out from user reactions.

5. Build a Great Website for Your Company

You should devote time and effort to building a great website for your business. Prospective investors, customers, and partners are going to check out your site, and you want to impress them with a professional product. Here are some tips for building a great company website:

  • Check out competitor sites.
  • Start by sketching out a template for your site.
  • Come up with five or six sites you can share with your web site developer to convey what you like.
  • Be sure the site is search engine optimized (and thus more likely to show up early on Google search results).

6. Perfect Your Elevator Pitch

An “elevator” pitch is intended to be a concise, compelling introduction to your business. You should be able to slightly modify your elevator pitch depending on whether you are pitching to prospective investors, customers, employees, or partners. Here are a few tips for developing and delivering a great elevator pitch:

  • Start out strong.
  • Be positive and enthusiastic in your delivery.
  • Remember that practice makes perfect.

7. Make the Deal Clear With Co-Founders

If you start your company with co-founders, you should agree early on about the details of your business relationship. Not doing so can potentially cause significant legal problems down the road (a good example of this is the infamous Zuckerberg/Winklevoss Facebook litigation). In a way, think of the founder agreement as a form of “pre-nuptial agreement.” Here are the key deal terms your written founder agreement needs to address:

  • How is the equity split among the founders?
  • Is the percentage of ownership subject to vesting based on continued participation in the business?
  • What are the roles and responsibilities of the founders?
  • If one founder leaves, does the company or the other founder have the right to buy back that founder’s shares? At what price?

Consider the Steps You Should Take to Protect Your Intellectual Property

It is important to protect your company’s intellectual property (IP). Ever wary of minimizing burn rate, startups may be tempted to defer investment in intellectual property protection. To those who have not tried to protect intellectual property, it feels complex and expensive. Too often, startups end up forfeiting intellectual property rights by neglecting to protect their ideas and inventions.

Some simple and cost-effective techniques can minimize the anxiety, yet help protect core assets.

The importance of market research should never be underestimated, especially for those starting a new business. ... From getting to know your target audience to exploring potential competitors, market research gives businesses a competitive edge, allowing them to thrive in new environments.

A thorough market research helps you explore more and different challenging opportunities that will help grow your business. To increase the stake for your business, you need to deliver something better than promised. This will make your customers extremely happy, paving a way for your business to grow.

Simply put, market research is the process of analyzing data about a market, product, or service. And the most obvious benefit is its ability to help you understand your customer. ... Through efficient research, businesses are able to establish an open-ended line of communication with their customers.